Anyone who has not seen the screaming headlines about the forthcoming energy crisis must have been living under an (unheated) rock for the last few months.

The press has repeatedly warned people of the impending price hike, which experts believe has been caused because of the Ukraine war and the pandemic. For most, the ‘whys’ do not really matter.

But, what is important is finding the most efficient way to stay warm this winter. Here are some top tips which might help reduce your energy consumption and keep the bills low as the cold weather sets in. At LW Developments, we plan and build for the future and put energy efficient high on the agenda.

Go low with the thermostat

The lowly thermostat is a device that innocently sits on your wall at home and is used to control the overall temperature of the building. But, for the purposes of this task, look upon it as the portal to your financial spend. By turning down that little dial, it is thought you could save about £100 a year.

For those who may be tempted to nudge it slightly higher, bear in mind that the World Health Organisation says that 18 degrees is sufficient for healthy adults. So, this winter jumpers, fleeces, dressing gowns and duvets are going to help plug that gap between feeling chilly and warm.

Dive into draught proofing

Draught proofing your property can apparently knock two per cent off the energy bill of an average house. Before the coldest months kick in, it is worth doing an itinerary of cold spots in your home and taking action. Draught excluders are useful items to have that prevent wafts of wind from coming in beneath doors.

Oddly, cling film could also play an important role in keeping cold breezes at bay as the Energy Saving Trust recommends using the food wrap on windows. The organisation has stated that the material, commonly used for sarnies and leftovers, can help trap the heat in, providing it is airtight on all the windows.

Standby for turning off… standby

The little red button that winks at us from many of our electrical items such as TVs, game consoles and radios has always been reassuring. To most of us, it indicates our goods are still working. For the impatient people, those blinking red eyes probably shave off about two to three seconds of waiting time when it comes to booting the item up.

But, what if we told you that keeping an electrical item on standby was costing between £28 and £77 a year extra? Suddenly those extra few seconds it takes to switch an item on when it has been completely unplugged does not seem so trivial now does it.

Watch the washing

Washing machines are unassuming kitchen items that most of us will use on a regular basis without giving it any thought. Remember though, heat costs so running a wash at 40 degrees is thought to cost the average homeowner £59.32 a year, according to the website In the Wash.

An annual saving of nearly £23 is up for grabs by simply doing all the washing at 30 degrees. It helps to ensure the drum is always full too instead of washing single items.

Shake up your shower use

Reducing your shower time by just one minute could save you more than £200 a year in energy bills. A timer in the bathroom will help ensure you keep your cleaning time quick.

That same minute could also save a further £105 a year in water bills for those who have a meter.

If anyone has a gym membership then using the facilities will also help cut down on your home energy spending, providing you were going for a workout anyway.

Dean Williamson

Dean Williamson MRICS